June 13, 2011
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution - early view.
Lake Tanganyika (LT) is a biodiversity hotspot supporting many endemic radiations that provide comparative systems in which to investigate if there are common factors leading to the build-up of its considerable diversity. Despite LT containing the highest diversity of lacustrine catfishes on Earth, the evolutionary relationships of nocturnal catfishes within the sub-family Claroteinae have not been investigated and it is unknown if its constituent genera have diversified via single or independent colonisation events. We report the first molecular phylogeny of the LT Claroteinae based on a multigene dataset (three nuclear markers, two mitochondrial totalling 4227 bp), including 85 samples from LT and outside of the lake basin. These data support LT claroteine monophyly, with the exclusion of the LT endemic Chrysichthys brachynema that independently colonised the lake but has not radiated. Multiple sampling localities from LT and the use of Bayesian species delimitation methods reveal additional locally restricted diversity within the LT Claroteinae clade. Fossil calibrated molecular divergence dates suggest that diversification occurred within full lake conditions as demonstrated in other LT lineages.
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